Book Recommendations for Parents

Danene Wanner's picture

I work with families, kids and parents and am often asked for recommendations of resources.  Below is a list of books that I put together that you might find helpful for parenting. 

 

How to Talk so Teens will Listen by Adele Faber & Elaine Mazlish

The renowned #1 New York Times bestselling authors share their advice and expertise with parents and teens in this accessible, indispensable guide to surviving adolescence. Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish transformed parenting with their breakthrough, bestselling books Siblings Without Rivalry and How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk. Now, they return with this essential guide that tackles the tough issues teens and parents face today.Filled with straightforward advice and written in their trademark, down-to-earth style sure to appeal to both parents and teens, this all-new volume offers both innovative, easy-to-implement suggestions and proven techniques to build the foundation for lasting relationships. From curfews and cliques to sex and drugs, it gives parents the tools to help their children safely navigate the often stormy years of adolescence.

 

How to Talk So Kids Will Listen by Adele Faber & Elaine Mazlish

The ultimate “parenting bible” (The Boston Globe) with a new Foreword—and available as an eBook for the first time—a timeless, beloved book on how to effectively communicate with your child from the #1 New York Times bestselling authors.

Internationally acclaimed experts on communication between parents and children, Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish “are doing for parenting today what Dr. Spock did for our generation” (Parent Magazine).  Now, this bestselling classic includes fresh insights and suggestions as well as the author’s time-tested methods to solve common problems and build foundations for lasting relationships, including innovative ways to: 

  • Cope with your child's negative feelings, such as frustration, anger, and disappointment
  • Express your strong feelings without being hurtful
  • Engage your child's willing cooperation
  • Set firm limits and maintain goodwill
  • Use alternatives to punishment that promote self-discipline
  • Understand the difference between helpful and unhelpful praise
  • Resolve family conflicts peacefully

Enthusiastically praised by parents and professionals around the world, the down-to-earth, respectful approach of Faber and Mazlish makes relationships with children of all ages less stressful and more rewarding. 

 

The Explosive Child: A New Approach for Understanding and Parenting Easily Frustrated, Chronically Inflexible Children by Ross W Greene Ph.D.

Screaming, swearing, crying, hitting, kicking, spitting, biting...these are some of the challenging behaviors we see in kids who are having difficulty meeting our expectations. These behaviors often leave parents feeling frustrated, angry, overwhelmed, and desperate for answers. In this fully revised and updated book, Dr. Ross Greene helps you understand why and when your child does these things and how to respond in ways that are nonpunitive, nonadversarial, humane, and effective.

Dr. Greene describes how best to:

  • Understand the factors that contribute to challenging episodes.
  • Identify the specific situations in which challenging episodes are likely to occur.
  • Reduce or eliminate challenging episodes by solving the problems that cause them.
  • Solve problems collaboratively (rather than unilaterally) and proactively (rather than reactively).
  • Help your child develop the skills to be more flexible, solve problems, and handle frustration more adaptively.
  • Reduce hostility and antagonism between you and your child.

With Dr. Greene's practical, expert guidance, you and your child will forge a new relationship based on communication and mutual respect.

 

Playful Parenting by Lawrence J Cohen, Ph.D.

Have you ever stepped back to watch what really goes on when your children play? As psychologist Lawrence J. Cohen points out, play is children’s way of exploring the world, communicating deep feelings, getting close to those they care about, working through stressful situations, and simply blowing off steam. That’s why “playful parenting” is so important and so successful in building strong, close bonds between parents and children. Through play we join our kids in their world–and help them to

  • Express and understand complex emotions
  • Break through shyness, anger, and fear
  • Empower themselves and respect diversity
  • Play their way through sibling rivalry
  • Cooperate without power struggles

From eliciting a giggle during baby’s first game of peekaboo to cracking jokes with a teenager while hanging out at the mall, Playful Parenting is a complete guide to using play to raise confident children. Written with love and humor, brimming with good advice and revealing anecdotes, and grounded in the latest research, this book will make you laugh even as it makes you wise in the ways of being an effective, enthusiastic parent.

 

The Connected Child: Bring Hope and Healing to Your Adoptive Family by Karyn B Purvis Ph.D., David R Cross Ph.D. & Wendy Lyons Sunshine

he adoption of a child is always a joyous moment in the life of a family. Some adoptions, though, present unique challenges. Welcoming these children into your family--and addressing their special needs--requires care, consideration, and compassion. Written by two research psychologists specializing in adoption and attachment,

The Connected Child will help you: 

Build bonds of affection and trust with your adopted child
Effectively deal with any learning or behavioral disorders
Discipline your child with love without making him or her feel threatened

Raising an Emotionally Intelligent Child – John Gottman PhD, Joan Declaire

Intelligence That Comes from the Heart

Every parent knows the importance of equipping children with the intellectual skills they need to succeed in school and life. But children also need to master their emotions. Raising an Emotionally Intelligent Child is a guide to teaching children to understand and regulate their emotional world. And as acclaimed psychologist and researcher John Gottman shows, once they master this important life skill, emotionally intelligent children will enjoy increased self-confidence, greater physical health, better performance in school, and healthier social relationships. Raising an Emotionally Intelligent Child will equip parents with a five-step "emotion coaching" process that teaches how to:

  • Be aware of a child's emotions
  • Recognize emotional expression as an opportunity for intimacy and teaching
  • Listen empathetically and validate a child's feelings
  • Label emotions in words a child can understand
  • Help a child come up with an appropriate way to solve a problem or deal with an upsetting issue or situation

Written for parents of children of all ages, Raising an Emotionally Intelligent Child will enrich the bonds between parent and child and contribute immeasurably to the development of a generation of emotionally healthy adults.

 

The Whole-Brain Child: 12 Revolutionary Strategies to Nurture Your Child’s Developing Mind by Daniel Siegel M.D. & Tina Payne Ph.D.

In this pioneering, practical book, Daniel J. Siegel, neuropsychiatrist and author of the bestselling Mindsight, and parenting expert Tina Payne Bryson offer a revolutionary approach to child rearing with twelve key strategies that foster healthy brain development, leading to calmer, happier children. The authors explain—and make accessible—the new science of how a child’s brain is wired and how it matures. The “upstairs brain,” which makes decisions and balances emotions, is under construction until the mid-twenties. And especially in young children, the right brain and its emotions tend to rule over the logic of the left brain. No wonder kids throw tantrums, fight, or sulk in silence. By applying these discoveries to everyday parenting, you can turn any outburst, argument, or fear into a chance to integrate your child’s brain and foster vital growth.   

Complete with age-appropriate strategies for dealing with day-to-day struggles and illustrations that will help you explain these concepts to your child, The Whole-Brain Child shows you how to cultivate healthy emotional and intellectual development so that your children can lead balanced, meaningful, and connected lives.

 

Brainstorm: The Power and Purpose of the Teenage Brain by Daniel Siegel M.D.

Between the ages of 12 and 24, the brain changes in important, and oftentimes maddening, ways. It’s no wonder that many parents approach their child’s adolescence with fear and trepidation. According to renowned neuropsychiatrist Daniel Siegel's New York Times bestseller Brainstorm, if parents and teens can work together to form a deeper understanding of the brain science behind all the tumult, they will be able to turn conflict into connection and form a deeper understanding of one another.  

In Brainstorm, Siegel illuminates how brain development impacts teenagers’ behavior and relationships. Drawing on important new research in the field of interpersonal neurobiology, he explores exciting ways in which understanding how the teenage brain functions can help parents make what is in fact an incredibly positive period of growth, change, and experimentation in their children’s lives less lonely and distressing on both sides of the generational divide.